How To Make Rice Kheer ( Indian Rice Pudding ) aromatic Rice Kheer aka Indian Rice Pudding is made with basic ingredients, and is the quintessential Indian dessert that every Indian grows up eating.
Flavored with cardamom, nuts & rose water, it’s the best way to finish off an Indian meal.
I can’t believe it took me so long to share a basic rice kheer recipe on the blog.
Kheer, a rice pudding is probably the most common dessert that’s made in every Indian household.
It’s one dessert that I grew up eating on a regular basis. Whenever there would be a celebration or a festival or just because we felt like eating a dessert, kheer was what mom always made.
What is Kheer
Kheer is Indian rice pudding made with only three basic ingredients- rice, milk and sugar. And I think that’s the reason it is so commonly made in India because the basic ingredients are so readily available everywhere.
My recipe calls for more than 3 ingredients but those are all optional and add ons. A simple rice kheer that my mom made was always made with only rice, sugar and milk.
In India when we use the word kheer, we are usually referring to the kheer made with rice.
However kheer can be made with other things as well like tapioca pearls, carrot, almonds etc. I love all variations but if you are looking for a classic Indian dessert, then it doesn’t get better or more authentic that a bowl of rice kheer or chawal ki kheer as we would call in Hindi.
I always prefer using whole milk to make my rice kheer, it makes the kheer more rich and creamy and I highly recommend the same.
Flavoring the Kheer
Like I said, you can make the kheer without any flavor with just the 3 basic ingredients. However, few spices and flavors are often added to the kheer to make it even more delicious!
Cardamom: of course the most common and my favorite. I never make my kheer without it.
Rose Water: a splash of rose water goes a long way in giving the kheer that flowery aroma.
Saffron: this was not used commonly in my home. But if you are making kheer for a special occasion then you can add some strands of saffron. Will give it a nice color and aroma.
Nuts: I personally love nuts in my kheer. I usually add cashews, almonds. I like raisins too but Sarvesh isn’t a fan so I don’t usually add them.
Kewra essence: is an extract distilled from pandanus flowers and used to flavor lot of Indian dishes and desserts. I add it sometimes but completely optional.
Serving Suggestions for Kheer
So should you serve the kheer warm or chilled?
The good news is that you can serve it either way, it’s just a personal preference.
Personally, I have always loved chilled kheer. I remember whenever mom would have kheer, I would take out my portion in a bowl and place it in the freezer to chill.
I always eat my kheer chilled.
On the other hand, many people I know prefer eating it hot straight out of the pan.
Either way, rice kheer is delicious and an easy dessert which you can make quickly with minimal ingredients.
Can you Make Kheer Vegan?
Just swap the regular milk with almond milk and it would taste just as good.
In fact I have a recipe for kheer made with almond milk here.
Also to keep the recipe vegan, skip the step of roasting the rice with ghee in the beginning.
Next time you cook an Indian meal, make sure to finish it off with this lovely kheer. You taste buds will definitely thank you!
- 1/4 cup rice 50 grams, I used basmati rice
- 1 teaspoon ghee also known as clarified butter
- 3-4 green cardamom pods slightly crushed
- 1 liter whole milk
- 4-5 tablespoons sugar 50-62.5 grams, adjust to taste
- 3 tablespoons chopped nuts I used chopped cashews & almonds
- 1.5 teaspoons rose water optional
preparation for rice kheer
Rinse ¼ cup basmati rice a couple of times till the water runs clear of the starch.Then soak the rice in enough water for 15 to 20 mins.
making rice kheer
Meanwhile, when the rice grains are soaking, take 1 litre full fat milk in a heavy wide pan or saucepan or kadai.
Keep the pan on a low to medium-low flame. Stir at intervals so that the milk does not stick at the bottom of the pan.
Let the milk come to a boil.
Take 1 tablespoon milk from the pan in a small bowl. Let the milk become warm. Then add a few saffron strands in the milk. Keep aside.
After the milk begins to boil, drain all the water from the rice and add it to the hot boiling milk. mix very well.
Simmer and cook rice on a low flame. No need to cover the pan when the rice is cooking.
Cook the rice grains till they are 50% done or half-cooked.
Then add 5 to 6 tbsp sugar or add as required. mix the sugar in the milk.
Continue to cook rice on a low to medium-low flame. Do stir at intervals. simmer till the rice is almost cooked.
flavoring the rice kheer
Then add ½ teaspoon cardamom powder. add blanched & peeled sliced almonds and chopped cashews and sliced pistachios. mix well.
Then add the saffron dissolved milk.
Again mix and continue to cook on a low flame till the rice kheer thickens and the rice grains have completely cooked.
Switch off the flame when the rice grains are completely cooked. The kheer will also thicken. On cooling rice kheer thickens more. Scrape milk solids from sides and add to kheer.
Lastly add 1 tablespoon golden raisins. At this step you can add 1 tablespoons rose water or kewra water.
Pour the rice kheer in individual serving bowls. You can serve the rice kheer, hot or warm or chilled. Refrigerate leftover rice kheer.
Use short-grain sticky rice to make it.
Use full-fat milk to make the kheer.
Also check:Sheer Khurma Recipe
You can skip adding saffron if you wish to.
Soaking the rice is very important so do not miss this step.
Cook it on low heat and in a heavy bottom pan.
Keep stirring after regular intervals. Make sure the malai doesn’t get stuck at the corners of the pan. It should combine with the rice and milk and regular stirring will make sure of that.
You can fry the dry fruits in little ghee before adding them in the kheer. It will give a different flavor.